Thursday, January 17, 2019

Paper Mill Playhouse to Hold Young Artist Auditions for 2019 Summer Professional Training Programs

 Paper Mill Playhouse (Mark S. Hoebee-Producing Artistic Director), recipient of the Regional Theatre Tony Award, is proud to announce student auditions for the theater’s prestigious Summer Musical Theater Conservatory and August Musical Theater Intensive on Saturdays, February 2 and 9, at Montclair State University, College of the Arts/Life Hall, 1 Normal Ave., Montclair, NJ. Students who earn coveted spots in the July Conservatory in the Senior (ages 15-18), Junior Plus (ages 13-14), and Junior Companies (ages 10-12) are directed and choreographed by Paper Mill’s professional artistic staff in a fully produced, original concert at Paper Mill Playhouse on August 2 and 3, 2019, titled New Voices of 2019: Learn Your Lessons Well.
An audition appointment is required.  To request more information or to schedule an audition appointment please email For audition guidelines and other important information visit
As one of the nation’s leading theaters, Paper Mill Playhouse has a well-earned reputation for launching both performers and shows for the Broadway industry. Since its inception in 1996, the Paper Mill Playhouse Summer Musical Theater Conservatory and the New Voices Concert have ignited the careers of many notable performers.  Among the Conservatory alumni are Academy Award winner Anne Hathaway (Les Misérables), Tony Award winners Laura Benanti (Gypsy) and Nikki M. James (The Book of Mormon), Tony nominee Rob McClure (Chaplin), Jelani Remy (Disney’s The Lion King), Shanice Williams, star of NBC’s The Wiz Live!, and Olivier Award nominee Jared Gertner (The Book of Mormon).  For the full list of notable alumni, visit 
The New Voices Concert is the culmination of the five-week program. Also appearing will be numerous winners and nominees of the 2019 Paper Mill Playhouse Rising Star Awards presented by Investors Foundation, who win scholarships to attend the Conservatory. Paper Mill Playhouse Education and Outreach programs are generously supported by the Goren Family and Harmony Helper.
Conservatory alumna Julia Knitel, who played the role of Carole King on the national tour of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, states, “Growing up, I was always in the ensemble. That was where I’d feel comfortable because I love being a team player. That’s one of the things that was so great about being at Paper Mill Playhouse, because in their Conservatory you had an equal amount of dancing, singing and acting training every day. I got a great foundation in being a team player and ensemble member, and serving a production. The producers and creatives of Beautiful saw in me something they couldn’t find elsewhere.” 
Noted Broadway talent agents and casting directors flock to New Voices every summer.  Victoria Kress, Abrams Artists Youth Theatrical Agent states, “(I’m always) super excited to head to Paper Mill Playhouse for their New Voices show! Having trained some amazing performers, I know this night will prove to be no different! It’s one of my best scouting field trips of every summer.”  Nora Brennan, casting director for Matilda, Billy Elliot, and The Radio City Christmas Spectacular,  agrees, “The kids were great, the show was fun and entertaining, and the material was tailored so that each child shone. Well done!”  Paper Mill’s professional casting partner, Telsey + Company, attends annually and often offers workshops to our advanced students.
The Paper Mill Playhouse Summer Musical Theater Conservatory is a program of rigorous study allowing students to enhance their individual performance potential while developing a broad base of theater experience and knowledge. Students participate in intensive classes including musical theater performance, acting, dance, private voice lessons, and improvisation, while also attending guest workshops led by professional actors, directors, and casting agents.  The final weeks are devoted to rehearsals for the annual New Voices Concert. The Conservatory offers the unique opportunity for gifted and talented young performers to work at their own level and challenge themselves to achieve new goals and learn new skills. Key to the curriculum is the development of self-discipline, respect, and a commitment to excellence that will serve these young artists throughout their lives.  
Students can also audition for the theater’s August Musical Theater Intensive Program. This three-week program allows performers between the ages of 10 and 16 to build individual technique and learn about themselves as performers, explore their own abilities, and refine their skills. Like the July Conservatory, admission to the August Intensive is by audition only. Intensive students do not perform in the New Voices Concert; rather, the Intensive classes prepare a musical theater showcase for family and friends. The focus of this program is on strengthening skills and building self confidence in a non-competitive environment. Accepted students are placed in one of two sessions according to age. The small class size in each session allows for individual attention and instruction from the faculty.
“From the first day of class all the way through opening night of New Voices, we require our students to rise to the demands of this rigorous program,” stated Lisa Cooney, Paper Mill Playhouse Director of Education.  “We ask them to work harder than they ever have before as young performers, and we strive to build an incredible ensemble company, while each student hones their own individual performance skills.  Our faculty pushes the students to believe in themselves as professional artists and treats them as such.  We find summer after summer that our students meet our expectations and more.  When they move on to college or the professional world, they are ready for the challenges they’ll face, and time and again they thrive and ultimately live their dream of being a professional performer.  It’s gratifying when they make a name or themselves on Broadway or in Hollywood, but even if they do not, the skills they learn and the work ethic they develop will serve them in any field.”
“Paper Mill Playhouse’s Summer Musical Theater Conservatory and August Intensive are some of the finest programs for musical theater in the United States,” stated Mark S. Hoebee, Paper Mill’s Producing Artistic Director. “It is amazing to see these young performers learn and grow into professional artists with a culminating performance produced by leading industry professionals.”
PAPER MILL PLAYHOUSE, a not-for-profit arts organization under the direction of Mark S. Hoebee (Producing Artistic Director) and recipient of the Regional Theater Tony Award in 2016, is one of the country's leading regional theaters.  Paper Mill Playhouse programs are made possible, in part, by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Paper Mill Playhouse is a member of the National Alliance for Musical Theater, the Council of Stock Theaters, and the New Jersey Theater Alliance.
For additional information, please visit

Mile Square Theatre kicks off its 2019 season with I and You, by Lauren Gunderson and directed by MST Artistic Director Chris O’Connor.

 Mile Square Theatre, Hudson County’s leading professional theatre, presents Lauren Gunderson’s drama I and You.

Caroline, ill and homebound, is visited by her high school classmate Anthony to complete a project about Walt Whitman. As these two let their guards down and reveal their secrets, the mundane poetry project unlocks the deeper mysteries between the two. Winner of the 2014 Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award Winner and finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Playwrighting Prize, I and You is a haunting play about the strange and transcendent connections between us all.

“I’ve rarely been effected by an initial reading of a play as I was with this one,” says director Chris O’Connor. “I find this play funny, heartbreaking, and deeply moving. Lauren Gunderson beautifully captures the voice of the post-millennial generation and renders a play that contains a relatable truth that cuts through all generations. I think this production will strongly resonate with the MST audience.” 

I and You stars Roland Lane (Scraps at The Flea) and Simone Grossman (Arcade Amerikana at Industry City), both making their MST debuts.

The creative team includes many of MST resident designers; scenic designer Jennifer Price Fick (The Garden of Rikki Tikki Tavi), costume designer Peter Fogel (The 39 Steps), lighting designer Jason Flamos (It’s a Wonderful Life), and sound designer Sean Hagerty (The Net Will Appear).

I and You begins performances on Wednesday, January 30 and runs till Sunday, February 24. Opening night and MST’s Season Opener Party is February 1.

I and You, presented by Mile Square Theatre
1400 Clinton Street, Hoboken
January 30 through February 24: Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays @ 8pm, and Sundays @ 3pm

Tickets available at, or by calling 201-683-7014.
Tickets are $15-40 • $18 students and seniors.

GROUP SALES available: email

Discount Parking available at The Harlow at 1330 Willow Avenue and at Little Man Parking at 1300 Jefferson Street.

For more information on Mile Square Theatre, please visit

New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera's Annual International Vocal Competition Winners and Finalists

Opera legend Lucine Amara, Artistic Director of the New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera, announces the winners and the finalists selected in the company's 30th Annual International Vocal Competition. Baritone Gerardo de la Torre from Mexico and soprano Joowon Chae from New York tied for first place and will share a $3,000 award. Tenor Tianchi Zhang of New Jersey was awarded third place and a $500 prize. In May 2018, the international competition opened to singers of all ages worldwide.
        The finalists were: soprano Samarie Alicea (New York), soprano Joowon Chae, tenor Hyunho Cho (New York), baritone Gerardo de la Torre (Mexico), soprano Holly Flack (Midland, New Jersey), baritone Joseph Gansert (Bronxville, New York), soprano Hayan Kim (New York), bass Seunghee Lee (Austin, Texas), soprano Hyeree Shin (New York), and tenor Tianchi Zhang (Jersey City, New Jersey).
"The New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera's Annual International Vocal Competition displayed some amazing young talent.  Although the judges noted many of the contestants had not yet mastered the proper belly breathing technique, this issue was addressed to great success in the free master classes we provided to the singers. It's always a thrill to see the young people master a new concept so quickly.  Bravi to all! We wish them great success in their future careers," said Amara.
An illustrious panel of judges adjudicated the final round of the competition. They include prominent vocal coach Tamie Laurence, voice teacher and audition coach Dillon McCartney, and Lucy Arner, Principal Conductor/Music Director with the New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera.
Training Singers
The finalists attended two free four-hour master classes taught by international soprano, teacher/coach, and stage director/general manager of the Verismo Opera Evelyn La Quaif, culminating with finals conducted at Shetler Studios in New York City. They received critical feedback; extensive free coaching on language, style and presentation; and the prospect to perform in Verismo Opera's fully staged productions. All finalists received the judges' comments.
About New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera
For 30 years, the New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera, a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization headquartered in Fort Lee, New Jersey, has been an integral part of the region’s classical music culture. Led by Metropolitan Opera luminary Lucine Amara, Verismo Opera provides performing opportunities for artists through semi-annual productions and concerts, directs an international vocal competition drawing artists worldwide, and organizes opera workshops and master classes.
For information, visit Verismo Opera's web site,; follow the company on Facebook,, or Twitter @NJVerismoOpera; or call (201) 886-0561.

Photo Attached.
1)  The New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera's 30th Annual International Vocal Competition winners and finalists
Photo Credit: New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera
The finalists were:  soprano Samarie Alicea (New York), soprano Joowon Chae, tenor Hyunho Cho (New York), baritone Gerardo de la Torre (Mexico), soprano Holly Flack (Midland, New Jersey), baritone Joseph Gansert (Bronxville, New York), soprano Hayan Kim (New York), bass Seunghee Lee (Austin, Texas), soprano Hyeree Shin (New York), and tenor Tianchi Zhang (Jersey City, New Jersey).

Discount Theatre Tickets for this Weekend

NJartsTix: Great theatre. Great prices. No. Tunnels. Deals this weekend!

Discounts available for select performances

January 18 - 21

In order of availability

SOUNDINGS: Reading Series


Writers Theatre of New Jersey
The Soundings Reading Series is designed to test a fairly well-developed play in front of an audience. Authors have five hours of rehearsal with professional actors and a director, and a public reading of the play with guided feedback from the audience.  All readings are followed by a discussion with the author, director, and Artistic Director John Pietrowski.
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Apple Season

Reg. $52 NOW $40!

New Jersey Repertory Company
Apple Season tells the story of siblings, Lissie and Roger, who fled from their family farm twenty years ago. Despite their disappearance, family secrets chase them still. A funeral, a surprising offer, and questions from an old friend add fuel to the flame of the memories that haunt them. As the two siblings tumble down a rabbit hole of memory and grief, anger and violence, they try to let go of the tangled past that holds them.
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The Niceties

Reg. $73 NOW $39!

McCarter Theatre Center
Race. History. Power. Zoe, a black student at an Ivy League University, is called into her white professor’s office to discuss her thesis about slavery’s effect on the American Revolution. In this riveting two-person drama, a polite clash in perspectives explodes into an urgent and dangerous contemporary debate.
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Noises Off

Reg. $40 NOW $30!

Two River Theater
Tony Award winner, Michael Frayn’s Noises Off belongs on any list of the funniest plays ever written. Screwball antics, sight gags, pratfalls, misplaced props, slamming doors and flying sardines all combine in this celebrated, flawless farce-within-a-farce.
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Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People at Centenary Stage

Randall Duk Kim and Anne Occhiogrosso headline Centenary Stage Company’s production of Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People, February 15 through March 3 in the Sitnik Theatre of the Lackland Performing Arts Center, Hackettstown, New Jersey. Adapted by John Alan Wyatt and directed by Anne Occhiogrosso, the production will feature Randall Duk Kim as Doctor Thomas Stockmann supported by an acting company of professional and local talent from the tri-state area and Centenary University. The full-scale production marks the culmination of the 2018 Gates Ferry Lecture Series: “What is Truth?” To purchase tickets, call the Centenary Stage Company box office at (908) 979 0900 or visit

With ripped-from-the-headlines relevance, this high intensity drama is a powerful investigation of ambition, integrity and the price we pay for truth. Originally published in 1882, An Enemy of the People concerns the actions of Doctor Thomas Stockmann, a medical officer charged with inspecting the public baths on which the prosperity of his native town depends. He finds the water to be contaminated. When he refuses to be silenced, he is declared an enemy of the people. Stockmann served as a spokesman for Ibsen, who felt that his plays gave a true, if not always palatable, picture of life and that truth was more important than critical approbation.

Occhiogrosso notes: “I first directed Enemy 30 years ago and Randall played Dr. Stockmann.  Simply put I love the challenge of bringing Ibsen to life on the stage again and Randall is ecstatic to be able to invite the unpredictable and lively Dr. Stockmann into his imagination once more. Ibsen’s voice is so needed today as we struggle with environmental crisis, women’s rights, economic inequality, political division and our very ideas of truth and justice.”

Henrik Johan Ibsen (1828 –1906) was a Norwegian playwright, theatre director and poet. As one of the founders of Modernism in theatre, Ibsen is often referred to as "the father of realism” and one of the most influential playwrights of his time. His major works include Brand, Peer Gynt, An Enemy of The People, Ghosts, Hedda Gabler, A Doll’s House, The Wild  Duck, When We Dead Awaken, The Lady from The Sea, Rosmersholm, The Master Builder and John Garbriel Borkman.  Ibsen is the most frequently performed dramatist in the world after Shakespeare. Several of his later dramas were considered scandalous to many of his era, when European theatre was expected to model strict morals of family life and propriety. Ibsen's later work examined the realities that lay behind the façades, revealing much that was disquieting to a number of his contemporaries. He had a critical eye and conducted a free inquiry into the conditions of life and issues of morality.

As the culmination of the 2018 Gate Ferry Lecture Series, “What is Truth? And Does It Matter?”, Kim and Occhiogrosso originally proposed the idea with the goal to encourage public dialogue surrounding this most serious of contemporary issues. Occhiogrosso states, “In this time of ‘Fake News,’ and ‘Alternative Truths’ and convenient omission of the facts, one is forced to ask ‘What is Truth? And Does It Really Matter?’ Kim adds, "Both these questions have served as the core inquiry of the world’s greatest and most popular playwrights over the past two thousand years. The theatre allows us to see man’s encounter with this mightiest and perplexing concept. We can see how they encounter it, try to escape it, hide from it, expose it and deny it, and how it affects their lives and the consequences endured through its encounter."

Review: Katrina Ferguson in 'Moon Over Buffalo' at North Coast Rep-

"Arthur Hanket and Katrina Ferguson steal the show as the battling spouses George and Charlotte"

 Arthur Hanket and Katrina Ferguson in a scene from North Coast Repertory Theatre's "Moon Over Buffalo." (Aaron Rumley)

Pam Kragen Contact Reporter


If you’re looking for Shakespeare in San Diego, head to the Old Globe. New plays? Check out La Jolla Playhouse. But if you’re a fan of farce, there’s no local theater better for the fast-paced comedies than North Coast Repertory Theatre.

Over the past 15 years, the Solana Beach theater has built a loyal following for these silly, door-slamming shows, like this month’s “Moon Over Buffalo,” which opened Saturday night.

The Ken Ludwig backstage comedy has all the elements necessary for a crowd-pleasing show — a strong cast, a good door-lined set, well-paced direction and the effervescent atmosphere required to keep its lightweight script aloft.

“Moon” is the fourth farce Matthew Wiener has directed at North Coast, beginning with Ludwig’s similar backstage comedy “Lend Me a Tenor” in 2011. Comparing the two, Wiener’s direction of “Moon” is much stronger, more uniform, naturalistic and less over the top.

Set in 1953, “Moon” is the story of a failing touring repertory company headed by married actors George and Charlotte Hay. At a theater in in Buffalo, N.Y., the tour collapses after the Hays’ daughter, Rosalind, leaves the company following a breakup with the tour manager, Paul; George impregnates the new ingenue, Eileen; and Charlotte decides to leaves George for their attorney, Richard.

Add to this a bottle of whiskey, an unexpected visit from film director Frank Capra and a case of mistaken identity and you’ve got enough high jinks for two hours of laughs.

North Coast Rep newcomers Arthur Hanket and Katrina Ferguson steal the show as the battling spouses George and Charlotte. They’re both ebullient and expansive in their engaging “show people” performances and they’re naturals at the punchy, period-style dialogue. Hanket also pulls off believably an extended and difficult drunken scene.

Back for her fourth farce at North Coast is Jacque Wilke as the Hays’ headstrong and exasperated daughter Rosalind. Wilke co-starred in Wiener’s “Lend Me a Tenor” eight years ago, and in 2008 she made a memorable local breakthrough in the farce “Don’t Dress for Dinner,” also at North Coast Rep.

Matthew Salazar-Thompson returns for his third farce at North Coast, starting with Ludwig’s “Leading Ladies” in 2006. In “Moon,” he plays the Hays’ lovesick but amiable lawyer, Richard.

Completing the cast are Roxane Carrasco as Charlotte’s hard-of-hearing mother, Ethel, who’s the tour costume manager. Josh Braaten plays tour manager Paul. Arusi Santi is Rosalind’s tongue-tied new boyfriend, Howard; and Brittney Bertier is the unexpectedly pregnant actress Eileen.

As he has for all of North Coast’s farces, resident scenic designer Marty Burnett created the show-within-a-show set: a tidy backstage area with a central turntable to show the action that occurs onstage at Buffalo’s Erlanger Theatre.

The only misstep in Wiener’s fleet-footed stage direction is repeatedly sending the actors through the wrong doors clearly labeled dressing rooms and stage right.

Matt Novotny designed lighting, Elisa Benzoni created costumes and Melanie Chen Cole designed sound.

There’s nothing surprising or groundbreaking in North Coast’s tried-and-true formula with “Moon,” but it’s a solid entry in the company’s long history of farce.
When: 7 p.m. Wednesdays; 8 p.m. Thursdays-Fridays; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays; 2 and 7 p.m. Sundays. Through Feb. 10.
Where: North Coast Repertory Theatre, 987 Lomas Santa Fe Drive, Solana Beach
Tickets: $45-$56 (discounts available)

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

After the Revolution by Amy Herzog at Circle Players


Circle Players and director Alicia Harabin of Somerville are proud to present the third production of our 2018-2019 season, After the Revolution by Amy Herzog.

Emma Joseph is a bright, hard-working, law school graduate continuing her family’s business of fighting for progressive ideals. She founded the Joe Joseph Fund four years ago, named for her grandfather who was blacklisted during the McCarthy era for refusing to name names. A curveball comes hurdling Emma’s way, however, when she finds out that her grandfather may have been passing information to Russians while working for the US government; a fact that was hidden from her by her father for her whole life, and one that calls into question her whole ideology.


· Fridays: February 1st and 15th at 8:00pm

· Saturdays: February 2nd, 9th, and 16th at 8:00pm

· Sundays: February 10th and 17th at 3:00pm

Tickets are $20 for adults/$18 for seniors/students.

A complimentary wine and cheese reception will be held following the opening night performance, and a talkback will be held following the Sunday, February 10th performance.


· Emma - Melissa Mugica of Edison

· Ben - Mike Johnson of Hillsborough

· Leo - Stephen Mennella of Somerset

· Mel - Megan O’Brien of Rahway

· Jess - Meghan Coates of Clinton

· Vera - Susan Schwirck of Monroe

· Morty - Martin Honig of Somerset

· Miguel - Victor Martinez of Mount Laurel

The theater is located at 416 Victoria Avenue, Piscataway. Please be advised: due to the unique layout of this theater in the round, latecomers cannot be seated after the performance has started. Please plan to arrive at least 15 minutes before curtain.

For reservations, call (732) 968-7555, or buy tickets online at

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Katrina Ferguson in Ken Ludwig’s ‘Moon Over Buffalo’ at North Coast Rep

Arthur-Hanket-_-Katrina-Ferguson-photo-by-Aaron-RumleyNORTH COAST REP GREETS NEW YEAR
Performances Beginning Wednesday, January 9, 2019
Extended Through Sunday, February 10, 2019
Directed By Matthew Wiener

Moon-over-Buffalo-FINAL-600w-300x334Solana Beach, CA – For its initial play of 2019, North Coast Rep is pulling out all the stops with an old-fashioned knockabout farce, MOON OVER BUFFALO. Written by comedy genius Ken Ludwig (Lend Me a Tenor), this laugh-a-minute show-within-a-show is an evening of mayhem filled with comic inventions and running gags, with everyone in the wrong costumes reading the wrong lines. Hailed by the New York Post as “one of the most hysterical things ever put on a stage,” this play is a love letter to live theatre that will leave audiences exhausted from laughter.

Front_-Katrinia-Ferguson-_-Roxane-Carrasco_-Back_-Josh-Braaten-and-Jacque-Wilke-photo-by-Aaron-RumleyMatthew Wiener directs Brittney Bertier,* Josh Braaten, Roxane Carrasco,* Katrina Ferguson,* Arthur Hanket,* Matthew Salazar-Thompson, Arusi Santi,* and Jacque Wilke.* The design team includes Marty Burnett (Scenic Design), Matthew Novotny (Lighting), Melanie Chen Cole+(Sound), Elisa Benzoni (Costumes) and Peter Herman (Hair and Wigs). Aaron Rumley* is Props and the Stage Manager.

*The actor or stage manager appears through the courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association, the union of professional actors and stage managers in the United States.

Josh-Braaten-_-Katrina-Ferguson-Photo-by-Aaron-RumleyMOON OVER BUFFALO previews began Wednesday, January 9. Opening Night on Saturday, January 12, at 8pm. There will be a special talkback on Friday, January 18, with the cast and artistic director. It will play Wednesdays at 7pm, Thursdays through Saturdays at 8pm, Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2pm with Sundays at 7pm and extended through February 10, 2019. There is a Wednesday matinee January 30 at 2pm. (See schedule below.) North Coast Repertory Theatre is located at 987 Lomas Santa Fe Drive, Solana Beach, 92075. Tickets: Previews- $45, Week Nights – $52; Sat. Eve. & Sun. Mat. $56; Sat. Mat. & Sun Night – $49. By popular demand, a Wednesday Matinee has been added on January 30 at 2pm – $52. Seniors, Students, Military & Educators – $3 off admission. There is also a $20 rush for tickets 15 minutes before performance if available.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Review: ‘Doubt’ at Barn Theatre–WOW!


Four years ago we opened a review with these remarks: “After several years and 200 plus play reviews we still marvel that the line between professional and community theater in New Jersey is so frequently blurred. We consistently experience theater excellence at The Chatham Playhouse, The Barn Theatre in Montville and The Chester Theatre Group, for example.  And, from performers such as David Cantor, Noreen Farley, Michael King, Chip Prestera, Barbara Haug, Steve Nitka, Jeff Jackson, Carla Kendall, and Dale Monroe… mention just a few of the outstanding talent our area is blessed with.”

Well, we continue to experience theater excellence….particularly yesterday at the Rob Nissen directed production of John Patrick Shanley' Pulitzer Prize winning play, Doubt at the Barn Theatre in Montville..

It is a perfect example of the 'blur.' The play is a unique, and fascinating take on the pedophile controversy that continues to challenge the church.  This production could easily transition to an Off-Broadway venue and win its share of raves.

Many readers will remember the powerful film version with Meryl Streep, the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, and Viola Davis. The film's four main actors were all nominated for Oscars at the 81st Academy Awards.

The plot: Sister Aloysius (Carla Kendall), the strict principal of St. Nicolas Elementary School, learns that Father Flynn (Greg Allen), the new priest, has met with the school’s first black student in private. Minus any real evidence she is certain that he has molested the boy, she determines to get him removed from the parish. Their battle and the boy’s story cast doubt not only on the priest, but on the church, personal conviction, and faith itself.

48377687_10155749335471574_7331149655444553728_oTo succeed in removing Father Flynn she enlists a reluctant young nun (Kathleen Mallon) and the boy’s mother (Leslie Silverman).   To say, Carla Kendall’s Sister Aloysius’ powerful, forceful, unrelenting attack of the priest is exciting theater is an understatement. Kendall was excellent as Maria Callas in Master Class at the Barn several seasons ago, but this performance exceeds that widely acclaimed effort. It is a bit of a theater cliché….but her performance alone is worth the price of admission. Playing Father Flynn is a Barn veteran Greg Allen. (Cal in last season’s Mothers and Sons).He is spot-on as the sensitive and caring priest. He particularly excels when he is sparring with the determined principal. Kathleen Mallon’s young Sister James is the perfect innocent who is conflicted by her enjoyment of teaching and Sister Aloysius' doctrine that children should fear, not love their nuns.

48356155_10155749319186574_160129020883632128_oLeslie Silverman is excellent in the role of Mrs. Muller, the black boy's very protective mother. Her dramatic confrontation with the principal who threatens to expel her son for "his own good" is a pivotal scene, beautifully executed.

In short; this is a truly remarkable production with a terrific cast that for any lover of fine theater is a "must-see" event.

Reviewed by Rick Busciglio  January 13, 2019

The key creative team includes: Samantha Haas stage manager; Lawrence Gabriel set design and décor (impressive set; JP Bedell lighting design; Ray Nissen original music; Larry Wilbur sound design; Marie Bogert, Alli Hartley-Kong props; Rob Nissen costumes. The producers are Cheryl Bookstaver and Janice Schopper.

Doubt, started on Friday, January 11th and runs through Sunday, February 2, 2019. Performances are Friday and Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm. Tickets are $20.00 with a discounted price of $18.00 for seniors over 65 and students under 18 on Sunday.

The Barn Theatre is located on Skyline Drive in Montville, NJ, just minutes off Exit 47 from Route 287. For more reservations, information or directions, call The Barn Theatre Box Office at (973) 334-9320, or visit The Barn Theatre on the web at

Top Photo :   Greg Allen and Carla Kendall,

[Photographs by Tom Schopper]

Sunday, January 13, 2019

NJ REP–New Season !



Twenty years ago, Lissie and Roger fled from their family farm and made themselves disappear. But the family secrets haunt them still.  A funeral and a question from an old friend send the two siblings tumbling down a rabbit hole of memory and grief, as they try to let go of a tangled past that refuses to release them. A National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere by E. M. Lewis, directed by Zoya Kachadurian and starring Kersti Bryan, Richard Kent Green, Christopher M. Smith.

January 10 - February 10, 2019

Kersti Bryan

Richard Kent Green

Christopher M. Smith

Media czar Roland McCabe owns dozens of newspapers around the globe, not to mention the most powerful and influential cable news network in the world: and his empire is about to grow. But when a controversy from the past threatens to topple it all, he summons his son as well as his most trusted protege to diffuse the crisis, regardless of how they might feel about it.  A World Premiere and Winner of an Edgerton Foundation New Play Award by Jack Canfora, directed by Evan Bergman The Source stars Eleanor Handley, Conan McCarty, Andrew Rein.

March 7 - April 7, 2019

Eleanor Handley

Conan McCarty

Andrew Rein

Jodi Long

The story of a popular husband and wife nightclub act of the 40's and 50's narrated and framed by the experiences of their daughter. Combining a family story with show business history and the ravages of racism, "Surfing My DNA" is a story of humor, passion, and perseverance against insurmountable odds. Written and performed by Jodi Long, and directed by Eric Rosen. LIMITED ENGAGEMENT!

May 2 - May 26, 2019

In the far future, a discovery is made which upends everything humanity has been led to believe. Meanwhile, in the 1970s, a pair of researchers on the Voyager One Golden Record project find themselves debating the very role humanity has to play in the universe. A World Premiere by Jared Michael Delaney, directed by Evan Bergman.

June 20 - July 21, 2019

A Soviet journalist with the gift of total recall. A psychologist seeking to rehabilitate herself. A government censor with a secret past. Over two decades, their fates become entwined as victims and collaborators in Stalin’s campaign to rewrite public memory. A National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere by D.W. Gregory, directed by James Glossman.

August 15 - September 15, 2019

Aging country superstar Toby Crenshaw is ready for his usual post-performance "meet and greet" with a line of eager, young groupies. But when the first girl to enter turns out to be far more than Toby can handle, he finds himself in an impossible situation. A World Premiere by Christopher Daftsios, directed by Sarah Norris.

October 24 - November 24, 2019


Saturday, January 12, 2019

Opera at Florham Event Tonight

Screenshot (51)

Audition: We are still looking to fill three key roles!

Holmdel Theatre Company is excited to continue our tradition of bringing classic plays to our stage for new audiences!

Life is a Dream

Written by Pedro Calderón de la Barca

Directed by Chris Szczerbienski and Laurie Devino

We are still looking to fill three key roles!

Segismundo- late teens to early 30s the barbaric prince who is tested to see whether he would make a good king. Intimidating presence.

Basilio- Segismundo's father 40+. Wise and caring sage.

Clotaldo- 30+ Basilio's general. Loyal but conflicted when dealing with a matter of family vs king.


Wednesday, January 16th, 2019

7:00 PM - 9:30 PM

Please email us to set an appointment.


March 29th, 30th, 31st, April 5th, 6th, 7th, 12th, 13th, 14th

Life is a Dream by Pedro Calderón de la Barca. First published in 1635 during the Spanish Baroque period. Pedro Caderón de la Barca was born during the Spanish Golden Age of theatre, he developed it further, his work being regarded as the culmination of the Spanish Baroque theatre. He is regarded as one of Spain's foremost dramatists and one of the finest playwrights of world literature.

Life is a Dream tells the story of Segismundo, Prince of Poland, who has been imprisoned in a tower by his father, King Basilio, following a dire prophecy that the prince would bring disaster to the country and death to the King. Basilio briefly frees Segismundo, but when the prince goes on a rampage, the king imprisons him again, persuading him that it was all a dream

The Duncan Smith Theater

182 Crawfords Corner Rd.

Holmdel, NJ 07733

(The white barn on the grounds of Holmdel High School)

Leonia Arts to Present 'Speakeasy' Benefit Jazz Concert Featuring Cenovia Cummins & Friends


Travel back in time to the Roaring '20s at the Leonia Arts' 'Speakeasy', a live benefit jazz concert with the Cenovia Cummins & Friends band to support the organization's 2019 art initiatives. Leonia Arts, a nonprofit cultural arts alliance in the borough of Leonia, New Jersey, presents the special event on Sunday, January 20, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. at the American Legion Hall (American Legion Post #1), located at 399 Broad Avenue in the borough.

The event features an instrumental jazz performance with six Broadway, New York City orchestra, and recording musicians. Led by composer, violinist, and pianist Cenovia Cummins, the program of original compositions also presents Stephanie Cummins, cello; Eric Weidman, clarinet and saxophone; Ray Jacob, drums; Ray Kilday, bass; and Rachel Handman, violin.


Guests are invited to wear creative festive dress. Prizes will be awarded for the best 1920’s or jazz inspired fashion. Professional event photographer Matt Dine will be onsite and take photographs of guests in their Speakeasy attire.


Tickets are now on sale for individuals and groups of ten. The early bird sale is $40 for individuals through January 11 and afterward for $45. Group tickets for a table of ten are available for $400. For additional information and to purchase a ticket, go to the organization's website,

A ticket purchase includes admission to the event, entertainment, a light fare of tasting platters, and one signature cocktail or wine, beer, and non-alcoholic cocktail. Complimentary soft drink beverages will also be available. Guests will have an opportunity to attend a post-performance mixer and see art works on display by visual artists from Leonia.

"The Leonia Arts 'Speakeasy' is the perfect remedy for a cold January night. Gather with friends, warm your spirits, listen to great instrumental jazz, and support the arts - locally!" stated

Dan Pacek, Vice President, Leonia Arts.

Gallery opening for Exit 70A's  show "No Entry" at Fairleigh Dickinson University Petrocelli College of Continuing Studies. The show, which features work by Leonia artists, encompases  different mediums and diverse styles from abstract paintings in oil, watercolor and acrylic, to photography. Exit 70A is comprised of (L-R) James Leynse, Katharina Castiblanco Grammer, Vince Priblo, Pam Fenwick, Ronald Pancrazi, Marsha Heller, Steve Swank, Elizabeth DeMarco, Nanda van Ginkel and Paul Leibow.

Founded in 2005, Leonia Arts supports the borough of Leonia's artists and arts organizations by promoting events, encouraging collaborations, and connecting with art enthusiasts. The winter fundraiser will assist several 2019 initiatives highlighting the arts in the borough. These include a community wide art project, the Leonia Arts Fair featuring local artists, and the Suzanne Pancrazi Memorial Scholarship for artistic achievement awarded to a graduating senior at Leonia High School.

For more information about the 'Speakeasy' benefit and the cultural alliance's work in the community, contact Visit for additional information about the organization, to join Leonia Arts, to view a calendar of upcoming arts events, and much more.

Photos .

1) Prominent musician Cenovia Cummins to perform at Leonia Arts' 'Speakeasy'

2) Cenovia Cummins & Friends (left to right):  Eric Weidman, clarinet and saxophone; Rachel Handman, violin; Ray Kilday, bass; Cenovia Cummins, piano; Stephanie Cummins, cello; Ray Jacob, drums

3) Visual artists will display their work at Leonia Arts' 'Speakeasy'. Artists shown (left to right): James Leynse, Tina Castiblanco Grammer, Vincent Priblo, Pamela Fenwick, Ronald Pancrazi, Marsha Heller, Steven Swank, Elizabeth C. Demarco, Nanda Van Ginkel, Paul Leibow

Photo credit: James Leynse

This Sunday at 7pm LOST IN YONKERS Chatham $5 Play Reading Series

The Chatham Community Players

The Chatham Community Players is excited to present Neil Simon’s, Lost In Yonkers as a part of their successful play reading series, “Sundays at 7”. One Night ONLY – Sunday, January 13, 2019 at 7:00 at the Chatham Playhouse, 23 North Passaic Avenue, in Chatham. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the door.  Salvador Navarro directs.  BYOB.

Written by America's great comic playwright, this memory play is set in Yonkers in 1942. Bella is thirty-five years old, mentally challenged, and living at home with her mother, stern Grandma Kurnitz. As the play opens, ne'er-do-well son Eddie deposits his two young sons on the old lady's doorstep. He is financially strapped and taking to the road as a salesman. The boys are left to contend with Grandma, with Bella and her secret romance, and with Louie, her brother, a small-time hoodlum in a strange new world called Yonkers.

The Cast:

Light snacks provided, patrons are encouraged to BYOB.

Funding has been made possible in part by the Arts Council of the Morris Area through the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.